Earlier this week I posted about cutting activities out of your schedule. Sometimes, I think adding activities back in is even harder. While it is difficult to cut things out, it can be more simple just to cut everything out until you figure out what to add back in. Adding activities back in to a still-busy schedule hurts my head. I’m not always sure where to start once we’ve gotten used to slowing things down.
Do you add activities for your kids? For you? Your husband? As a couple? What is too much? What if nothing seems to match up with your ideal activity schedule?
While my priorities may be different from your’s, we had to start somewhere. For awhile, we did almost cut everything out cold turkey. Occasionally, even visiting new churches was tiring. Here is where we started:
- Our first priority has always been staying God-centered. What will bring us closest to Him individually and as a family? We had many discussions about finding a new church and deciding how to further our relationships with the Lord before other activities crowded that out.
- What will give us the most time as a family? Ultimately we decided to put a large majority of our focus on this (aside from spending time with God).
- What will give us the most time as a couple? Our marriage takes priority over parenting; however, we almost always have a minimum of 2 hours of quality time after our kids are in bed. The trick is making sure that time is quality and not just quantity. We have started having regular game nights together, and we are also going to have regular devotion nights again. I am a big fan of date nights (out) but date nights at home are a great alternative!
- What will give us our own downtime? We have remained committed to allowing each other one night a week to pursue a hobby, a sport, time with friends.
- What allows us to get exercise without taking away too much time from all of the above? For my husband, his downtime is exercise. For me, I have started doing a short work-out right after getting home in the afternoons. For our kids, they are happy running in the sprinklers or swimming. Soon we will discuss kid sport activities. I have still been very conservative about adding those. I would love for my kids to be star athletes, but I feel that once we start that family time will be gone.
Here is to having a nice, relaxed weekend with an open schedule!